Seasonal variations of lipid content and composition in Perna viridis

Duo Li, Yonghua Zhang, Andrew J. Sinclair

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The total lipid content, composition of main lipid classes, composition of sterols and composition of fatty acids in the main glycerolipids of Perna viridis were analyzed through four seasons using TLC-FID and GLC. Mussel samples were collected during different seasons between 2003 and 2004 from Shengsi Island, Zhejiang Province, China and stored frozen prior to freeze-drying and lipid extraction. Ten grams of dried mussel powder of each season were analyzed. Total lipid content ranged from 14.5 g/100 g in spring month to 7.8 g/100 g dried mussel powder in autumn month. The predominant lipid in spring month was triacylglycerol (TAG), however, in the other three seasons the phospholipids (PL) was the main lipid class. The most abundant fatty acid in TAG, PL and phosphatidylcholine (PC) was 16:0, with the summer samples having the highest proportion (24-30% of total fatty acid) and winter the lowest (14-22%). In phosphatidylethanolamine (PE), the spring samples had the highest proportions of 16:0. The predominant polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) were 22:6n-3 and 20:5n-3 in TAG, PL, PE and PC (25-40%). The proportions of 22:6n-3 and 20:5n-3 were higher in spring than in other seasons in PL and PE. There were nine sterols identified, with cholesterol being the predominant sterol, and other main ones were desmostersol/brassicasterol and 24-methylenecholesterol. Proportions of other fatty acids in different lipid fractions and the sterol compositions as well also varied seasonally. There were subject to the seasonal variations. Differences in lipid content and composition, fatty acid composition in different lipid fractions may be caused by multiple factors such as lifecycle, sex, variation of plankton in different seasons and temperature, which could influence physiological activities and metabolism.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)739-747
Number of pages9
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2007
Externally publishedYes


  • Chinese mussel (Perna viridis)
  • Fatty acid
  • Lipid content
  • Phosphatidylcholine
  • Phosphatidylethanolamine
  • Polyunsaturated fatty acids
  • Sterol
  • Triacylglycerol

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